Everything was set, as I stood waiting for Ace to show up. Simon and I drove off to the resort early in the morning and to say, the amount of time, I took to persuade Simon for the trip.
Minutes later, I saw Ace walking towards us but my attention was towards the blond girl behind Ace. Chelsea Kinsley.
She seems to be tagging along Ace, just everywhere and somehow that irked me and annoyed me the most. To the top of that her continuous smile. I know what expressions you should have in a professional job and her being a manager, she should possess those qualities but not every fucking time.
I thought Ace would bring his sister and I would get to meet her. I have had heard that she just graduated from Howards and it would have been great to know her in person but Chelsea was her replacement as she was out of town. I had no problem with that, but I had no idea why Chelsea sticking to Ace made me really annoyed and...possessiveness?
Yes, that was true. I had very few people around me whom I trusted and Ace was also in that. So, perhaps I was just too possessive for them.
“You can take that bed, if you want,” I said as I kept my things on the couch in the room as I looked at her going towards the bed near the balcony.
There was no way, I would like to share a bed with her, and it was I had instructed the staff to give us a room with separate single beds.
“I hope you don’t mind me joining. Ace was the one who brought me here. I told him I don’t want to di-”
“It’s alright. If Ace chose to bring you here then I don’t really mind,” I said as I sat down on the other bed and got rid of the sweater. Even though the temperature was low outside, still I felt hot as I massaged the back of my neck staring down at my phone.
“So? How did you get into this line? You were in our batch in London right?” I heard her asking me but I chose not to pay much attention to her as I simply nodded at her but still she chose to ask more questions.
“From which university did you graduate?”
“University of Pretoria, Gordon Institute of Business Science,” I replied looking down at the watch. We should start preparing for the barbeque.
“Oh! South Africa! Nice. I’m from Stanford,” she cracked up at the end which made me stare up at her.
“Still you are a manager in someone’s company while I run my own business, worldwide. Got the irony?” I gave her a cold stare while she nodded, looking defeated as she turned around and walked out of the room towards the balcony.
Chelsea Kinsley, you may be able to fool Ace with your looks and behavior, but you can’t dare to play with Veronica Sullivan.
I had no idea, why I was so bothered when Ace ignored me most of the times to be with Chelsea.
Why did I care?
From when did Veronica Sullivan cared if anyone gave her attention or not?
It’s not just anyone, but Ace.
I have been very close and open to only person, not even my mother or father but its only Ace. So, perhaps it was natural fro me to be overprotective towards him. But still, I knew I couldn’t just stick to him and keep on judging everyone around him, so why did him giving time to Chelsea bothered me?
It was none of my business what they were doing but still, I had that burning sensation within my heart as I saw them far away talking and laughing to each other.
They seemed to have grown warm to each other’s company and Ace seemed to enjoy being with her. What made him take her away to have a talk which I couldn’t hear? What privacy did they both had?
I got back after having a talk with the staff about the arrangements when I saw a glass of water and feeling thirsty, I picked it up to drink only to see them some distance away from us laughing and talking. It was when Chelsea stood up on her tip toe and Ace leaned backward. For the time ever, my mind went blank as I thought at the next moment that Chelsea was going to kiss him.
There it was.
I had no idea, when the glass I clutched minutes ago, crushed and the pieces of glass pierced right into my palm and in no minute, blood oozed out of it. I felt pain, immense pain but it was nothing to the realisation of what I felt when I saw Ace running towards me instantly.
He could never see me in pain. True, back then I protected him physically, but in truth, he was the one who gave solemn to my feelings and protected me mentally when I felt lonely and gave direction as I wandered around being hit by darkness and path of rage.
I liked it when he cared for me and solved my problems. I was breathless when I saw him, standing there at the rooftop when we met after so many years, all gorgeous and grown up. I cherished everything about him, his intellectuality, intelligent and most importantly how simple he was.
No attitude, no proud and always generous.
“Are you alright, Veronica?” it was Simon who asked me and I looked back at him as I gave him a nod but Ace’s warmth hand gave me relief of assurance that yes, someone was there truly worried about me and who looked after me even though I knew how reckless and rebellious I was.
“Here! The first-aid kit,” Chelsea said as she handed over the box to Ace, who looked beyond agitated and also in agony as he made me sit and looked at my wounds, which were not deep but as I opened my palm, the pieces of glass fell down to the earth surface and I winced, taking in deep long breaths as he cleansed the wound.
“Are you feeling alright now?” he was still worried as he kept on looking at my well dressed bandaged hand.
“Ace, I told you I’m fine. How many times are you going to ask?” I said as I looked down at the bandage. I have been having multiple thoughts since the time, I realised something and since then I have thinking how to deal with everything without being rebellious.
“Look, we should go to the doctor, what if there is a glass stuck in your skin?” he said, his eyes reflecting his anguish as he saw my pain. He knew I was never going to show I was in pain but still he worried about me and perhaps he knew I was hurting.
“Ace,” I said as I placed a hand on his cheek and gave him a reassuring smile, “Calm down. I’m alright,” I told him and even though he nodded his eyes spoke something else but still he chose to avoid questioning me anymore as he looked elsewhere and all of a sudden got up.
“I will bring you some grilled meat, to eat,” he said and walked towards Simon while I sat there looking at his retreating back.
“How are you feeling?” I heard Chelsea and looked to my side to find her walking towards me as she took a seat next to me on the bench and handed me a can of juice.
“Thanks,” I said as I took it from her and opened it before gulping it down in one go.
“I’m feeling better now,” I spoke as I kept my hand on my knee and played with the juice in my hand, whirling it in the can.
“The glass had must been already broke when you lift it up. How could you not know? I mean look what it did. It hurt you,” she spoke which made me scoff as I smiled and looked back at her.
“Sometimes, there are things that you can’t really see with your bare eyes. Let it be a broken glass or,” I took another sip from the can and gulped it down, challenging her with my eyes “feelings.”
“What do you mean?” she rubbed her elbows as she averted her gaze away from me.
“You tell me, what I mean,” I said and she continued to stay quiet as she looked towards Ace.
“I don’t know what you are talking about,” she spoke through her teeth which made me chuckle.
“Really? Then let me be clear with you. I don’t like you being near to Ace. Stay away from him,” was what I told her when all of a sudden she looked at my direction and her jaws locked as she gave me a foul expression.
“And why do you think I would listen to you? Is he your boyfriend or your husband? Why are you always so hostile to me? Veronica seriously! I know you are his friend and you remember I used to bully him, but that fourteen years ago, we were kids and immature. I knew I was wrong and hurt him in those days and I regretted it. I apologized to him and he forgave me. Why can’t you?” she looked annoyed and exhausted as she finished.
I gave her a pointed look as I stared at her for a few seconds when again she averted her gaze away from me.
“Do you find me petty? Or do you think I should be pitiful towards you because you-” I air quoted “changed,”
“Then why can’t you keep eye contact with me, if we are having an argument about Ace huh?” I joked and looked back towards Ace who looked back at us and gave us a smile. I returned him a smile and looked back at Chelsea to find her staring at him.
“Do you really think I give you importance and be hostile towards you only for the fact that you bullied him fourteen years ago?” I questioned and she looked at my eyes. “Then what?” she asked which made me chuckle.
“Passed out from Stanford and you are just a manager in Knight’s corp when you can have anything but a manager. Your degrees are of no use, I must say,” I joked and saw her clenching her fist.
“Unless you have an ulterior motive,” I spoke as I sipped the juice again and stared at the juice can.
“M-Motive?” her voice trembled as she remained silent waiting for me to speak.
“Mr. Kinsley has joined hands with Dox limited hasn’t he?” I asked and heard her gasp.
“I must say, he betrayed Mr. Xavier Knights, Ace’s father’s years of friendship and joined his rival company wanting to dissolve Knight’s Corp, hasn’t he? And isn’t this why you are here in this company as a manager. I’m I not right, Miss Kinsley?” I challenged and saw her clutching her sweater tightly.
“Oh don’t worry. I’m yet to disclose about this before Ace. I have not told him that your father was the one, who persuaded the board of directors to have a voting for the new CEO and discouraged everyone from choosing Amelia, Ace’s sister as the new CEO even though she graduated from Havard’s and we all know what capabilities she holds. And also the fact that he brought the one whom he wanted to be the CEO standing against Ace at the time of vote. But alas! Had it not been for Ace’s worldwide fame as a genius scientist, he would have lost his own company to a traitor, your father,” as I completed her eyes turned murderous as she snapped at me angrily, “Veronica, mind your words!”
“It’s been fourteen years Chelsea but I must recall you that what I told you back then were all true and I hope you remember how vengeful I can be. Don’t show me those eyes of yours or it won’t even take me a second to pull it out. Do you hear me?” I gave her a warning as I crushed the can using the hand which was hurt by the glass. Even though it hurt, I still couldn’t feel the pain as all I could feel was rage and anger.
“I must applaud your audacity to sit here and gaze into my eyes,”
“Are you not here to pass informations to your father about each and every project that Knights Corp works on? I dare you to prove me wrong on my face!” I said as I threw the crushed can on the ground.
“How do you-”
“I shall cut some slack for you. Your father tried to manipulate each and every investors of Knights corp and guess what whom he approached? That’s right,” I pointed towards my own self “Me.”
“And guess what? I’m not an idiot to invest on a company only to see it sink down? I play with my mind and to top of that your father betrayed my friend. Sorry, correction, best friend and do you think I will be all happy and defenseless near you?”
“Look! I can explain. I am not with my father. I have never disclosed any information to him even though it’s true I joined Knight’s corp because he wanted me to. I have never thought of betraying Ace, please trust me. I have changed and I have decided to support him, no matter what!” she pleaded, and I could see her eyes teared up in the end.
“Oh I guess, it is also the reason why I’m tolerating you, Miss Kinsley and trust me, I’m waiting for the day when you are the one who tells Ace everything about this. The day you speak the truth is the day, I will think of being more modest and less hostile towards you. Until then, don’t show me your face or trust me, you don’t know me. I will be more vengeful than the last time,” I warned her as I pointed a finger at her and she nodded as she got up making her way back into the resort.
“Idiot!” I mumbled as I looked back at my hand. The blood was oozing out of the bandage when all of a sudden Ace was right before me keeping a plate on the bench as he got hold of my hand.
“Again? What the hell did you do Veronica? Do you not understand? Why are you always like this!” he complained while all I did was smile up at him as he continued scolding me as if I were a school kid.
It was already late in the evening as I called Simon inside the room and we made it to the balcony as we stared down and saw Chelsea and Ace sitting before the bonfire that the resort staff arranged for us.
"What do you want to say?" I heard him as I stared at Ace.
Is this what you mean when you told me, I could never be happy if I don't listen to my heart?
Well then, for the first time ever, I'm giving a chance to my heart and ignoring what my brain has to say.
My brain only speaks business and I'm tired of it.
"Let's call it off."
From now on, I want to be happy and also be in peace.